YES SHE KHAN: While President Obama and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong were immersed in trade talks, their respective wives, First Lady Michelle Obama and Ho Ching, toured the National Gallery of Art.
FLOTUS wore a sunflower yellow-colored dress with floral appliqué from one of her favorite designers Naeem Khan, and her guest wore a black-and-gold lace pantsuit. The pair received the white glove treatment with the museum’s director Earl A. “Rusty” Powell 3rd leading them through the galleries. Admiring an 1860 oil portrait of Abraham Lincoln, Powell explained it was last portrait done of Lincoln before he grew a beard. A little while later during a performance by students in the Turnaround Arts program in another gallery, the First Lady danced for a few minutes to “Lean On Me” with the troupe. The select audience also could have gotten a closer look at the Lucifer Vir Honestus jade drop 18k rose gold earrings she was wearing.
While visiting another museum on Monday, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the First Lady opted for a dress from another New York-based designer label, Zero + Maria Cornejo. For that outing, she wore the Remi dress in canvas and charcoal.
Khan said via e-mail Tuesday that the dress was designed “with the idea of something similar to a dress in my resort 2017 collection. We chose a flattering sleeveless and A-line style for quintessential summer entertaining, in yellow Guipure lace, with three-dimensional flowers.”
Khan has been FLOTUS’ go-to designer as of late. For the Nordic State dinner at the White House in May, the First Lady chose an off-the-shoulder blushed beige ballgown by the designer for what was the 12th such occasion of her husband’s administration. For her more public appearance at last week’s National Democratic Convention in Philadelphia, the First Lady pledged allegiance to another New York designer, by wearing a blue cap-sleeved Christian Siriano dress.
There is no word yet as to which designer gown she will wear at tonight’s State dinner in honor of the Lees’ visit. This marks the first official state visit by a Singaporean Prime Minister in more than 30 years. The occasion also celebrates the 50th anniversary of diplomacy between the two nations.
Fashion observers might view Khan’s alliance with the First Family as a different kind of diplomacy. FLOTUS wore a Khan dress in March in Havana for a State dinner with Cuban President Raúl Castro. And Khan was the designer whom Obama turned to for dresses for the First Daughters, when they attended another state dinner earlier that month for Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. FLOTUS also wore a Naeem Khan gown for her first State dinner in honor of India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in November 2009.